The IT platform for Messages is an initiative under the “Digital India” programme of the Government of India. The initiative has been given the name “e-Sampark”.
- To create a provision for sending informational and public service messages in the form of emails (referred to as a mailer subsequently) and SMS to Elected representatives, Government employees and various categories of professionals.
- The data will be sourced from Ministries/Departments and States across all tiers of the Government framework – including Central Government, State / UT Governments and local bodies. The data will also include information pertaining to various corporate, autonomous bodies and other organisations under the government.
- An extensive database of all functionaries of the Government at different levels including elected representatives and government officials has already been created.
- The e-Sampark database is highly sensitive as it contains the details (Name, email address, mobile number, place of posting etc.) of all Government officials. In the near future it will also include the database of professionals in the country. Keeping in the mind the critical nature of the data, security of the data is important. Hence access to the database will be provided selectively with a due authorisation process.
- This policy has been drafted to identify a process for updating and usage of the e-Sampark database by the respective Ministries/Departments and States.
- Data Collection: e-Sampark has a database of the entire Government, both at the Centre and State. The email and mobile number for each individual are updated in the module for each registered user.
- Data Usage: e-Sampark Data will be used by the Government to send mailers and SMS.
Sending a Mailer-
(a) The application has a user console. Using the console, access can be given to the identified nodal officer of each Ministry/Department/State. The assigned officer can update the database using the bulk upload feature which allows bulk uploading through MS-Excel files or individually updating one entry at a time.
(b) NIC will ensure that the software designed for sending the mailers will have the option to “unsubscribe: If a user chooses to this option, he will not be sent any mailer/SMS.
Sending a SMS-
(a) Similar to sending a mailer, SMS can be sent to a target user-base using the console.
(b) Each mailer and SMS that is sent is identified as a campaign. The application has a provision of a dashboard that shows the nodal officer the analytics of the campaign i.e. number of mailers and SMS sent, percentage read, percentage of forwards, URL clicks etc.
(c) Nodal officers will be provided a user manual for accessing the database and its method of usage.
Who can access:
- PMO, DeitY, e-Sampark PMU and NIC are the custodians of the data and have full access to the same. PMO, Secretary DeitY, OIC e-Sampark PMU and DG, NIC shall be authorised to send mailers and SMS as deemed appropriate
- Secretary of a Ministry/Department/State: View Access will be given to the user base of the respective domain only. For instance, the Secretary School Education GoI can view the data for the School Education department and associated organisations in the Central Government, while the School Education Secretary of the State Government will be able to view the relevant data for his / her State only.
- Nodal officer will have full Access (upload/delete/edit) to the user base of that respective site only. Access does not imply data download.
- Inter-ministerial usage of the data is subject to approval by respective Secretary of the concerned Ministries followed by approval from OIC e-Sampark PMU / DG, NIC. Usage implies sending mailers and SMS only and does not imply (view/edit/delete of data of other Ministries.
- Usage of the entire database, if required by a Central Ministry/State will require the approval of Secretary DeitY, or his designate.
- Equivalent levels can send mailers to equivalent levels. For instance a Minister can send to other Ministers and Secretaries to all other Secretaries.
- Database download will not be allowed by any Ministry / Department / State.
Criteria for usage of Data:
For sending Mailers and SMS to the target user base using the e-Sampark database, it is mandatory for the subject to fall under any one of the following criteria :
- Information pertains to an existent or proposed policy / decision of the Government
- Launch of new schemes
- Issue related to initiate Citizen awareness
- Urgent alerts in national or public interest
- Mailers to citizens who subscribe to an issue / task within the Government using any Government portal
- Government updates and outcomes related to Global interactions
- Greetings for generating good will. Greetings can be sent within the user base of the respective Ministry only.
- Any other criteria as deemed appropriate by PMO / DeitY.
- DeitY will bear the costs of creating and maintaining the IT infrastructure for e-Sampark. DeitY will also bear the cost for obtaining bandwidth for Sampark. However, costs incurred on account of data-entry etc, if any, will be borne by the concerned Ministry / State / UT / organisation. DeitY will make provisions in its Budget for cost of SMS. However, Ministries / States / UTs may also make appropriate provisions in their IEC budgets for the cost of SMS campaigns.
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